US bank to invest $51 mln in India's Religare

MUMBAI, June 27 Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:20pm EDT

MUMBAI, June 27 (Reuters) - India's Religare Enterprises Ltd said late on Wednesday U.S.-based bank Customers Bancorp Inc will invest $51 million in the financial services firm through a combination of stake sale by founders and issue of share warrants and fresh shares.

The transaction is part of a plan by Religare's founders, billionaire brothers Malvinder and Shivinder Singh, to bring down their holding to 49 percent in order to qualify for a banking licence in India.

Pennsylvania-based Customers will buy shares worth $22 million from the founders. It will invest another $28 million in preferential share warrants in Religare, convertible within 18 months, and subscribe to fresh shares worth $1 million, Religare said in a statement.

It did not specify how much Customers Bancorp would own in Religare after the transaction.

India's central bank issued guidelines in February allowing any type of company to set up a bank.

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